Could we read this novel in different ways?

I was sort of thinking that we could read this novel in the 9 separate ways for the 9 separate narratives. Mostly because when I was reading it, I was mostly focused on Xanther’s narrative so I had to skim back through everyone else’s narratives. Basically, most of my thinking went into the sections where Xanther, Anwar, and Astair are the speakers. I sort of lumped them together but maybe we could even read their narratives separately. It seems like another challenge of how we’re supposed to read the novel. Of course, I read it chronologically like I’m assuming we all have, so I can’t speak of how exactly it would affect a reading of the novel. But I do think it may have helped with some of the confusion we’ve had if only slightly. Any thoughts?

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2 responses to “Could we read this novel in different ways?”

  1. mconthe127 says :

    I think the idea of reading the novel separately would be really helpful because, as you mentioned, the Ibrahim storyline overpowers the rest of them. I found myself consistently wanting to skip over the other story lines completely just to get to the next Xanther part. Having said this, I know that the other story lines are somehow crucial to the overall novel, so maybe reading them separately would allow us to give them the attention they deserve. I especially like the idea of doing this if one was considering rereading the book for a second time. This way we could easily look at each part in a new light and possibly pick up on more aspects contributing to the overall novel. I think Jingjing’s section would especially benefit from this type of reading.

  2. drewdown002 says :

    This novel is very different, so however you choose to read it seems perfectly acceptable to me. I constantly found myself wanting to skip some parts to get to others. I think I only did this because the other parts were visually appealing to me as I skimmed through the book. The author does a good job of playing with the visual sense. I do agree with the above comment about “wanting to skip over the other story lines” in order to read more about Xanther. Since I started reading at the front of the book and worked my way to the back, Xanther was the natural focus of my attention simply from being the first I read about. This fact is how I see the novel as being similar to other novels.

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